Hope fades for West’s promotion chance

editorial image

Dalziel 22

West 18

Time is running out for West’s promotion hopes following narrowly losing to Dalziel.

West started well with a driving maul going 15m but it was held up and the move ended in a turnover. West scored first when a wraparound between Mark Jenkinson and Alex Fisken saw the ball moved out to Fintan Cuthbertson who chipped forward and chased. The Dalziel fullback didn’t deal with the situation and Fintan Cuthbertson touched down to score. The conversion was just missed and West led 0-5.

The battle at the breakdown was ferocious and Dalziel hit back when their scrum half Andy McLaren found a big gap in the West defence to score under the posts. They converted to lead 7-5.

Things got worse for West when Dalziel took a tap penalty near the line and managed to snipe over to score uncoverted to make it 12-5. West pressed back with a series of passing moves which were dealt with by a dogged Dalziel defence until a long series of passes switched inside then out to find Jamie McAulay on the overlap to score , again unconverted to narrow the gap to 12-10.

The rest of the half was a series of penalties, knock ons, missed touches and defences were on top and it was 12-10 at the break.

Dalziel draw first blood in the second half when they intercepted and found winger James Baxendale who scored in the corner unconverted to make it 17-10. West had a penalty in front of the posts scored by Ross McAulay, 17-13 and all to play for.

The referee was getting fed up with breakdown offences when he gave both captains a talking to and disaster struck for West when Dalziel scored their bonus point try, Crawford Reid sneaking over after a series of phases. The conversion was missed and West’s Tom Grey was sin binned for an offence in the lead up to the try. Dalziel were leading 22-13 against 14.

West clawed a score back when they broke out of defence, Mark Jenkinson breaking free before the ball was spread wide to Angus Thomson who scored unconverted to peg the score back to 22-18. However, the conversion was again missed. West couldn’t get any change from the Dalziel defence who were now monopolising possession and things didn’t get any better for West when Ross McAulay was yellow carded near the end. The game fizzled out and Dalziel ran held on for the victory.